I’ve spent the majority of my time at LexBlog visiting attorney websites and reading their blogs. Just last Friday, I went through about 500 attorney websites that claimed to have a “blog”. This batch of url’s has been filled with wonderful blogs and others that were more than lacking. This morning I came across a farewell post to a great blog that I had not known existed. The post can be read here: The Legal Whiteboard Farewell Post. While I normally would quickly scan this kind of post and move on, I felt the need to stop and really read the wisdom from a well-seasoned professor/lawyer. It’s a good read and I highly suggest taking ten minutes to dive in and take something of value out.
While Prof. Henderson’s post reflects only a small part of the dead blogs (blogs that have been discontinued, but remain online), I thought I would take the time to discuss what it means when I see a dead blog. To let you know, I have a list of 327 dead law blogs and these blogs can be broken up into sub-categories each with vastly different meanings for the attorney or firm’s website.
Blank Dead Blogs
These blogs are pretty easy to figure out what may have happened. Either the attorney didn’t know of the blog page or did know. Which means, if the attorney wasn’t aware of the blog page, the blog itself could have been a feature of their platform that was never explained. Or, maybe, they never cared to explore their site. If they did, in fact know of the page, they might have had the intention, but never got started. The worst case is knowing about the page and they didn’t care that the page was there, blank. In any case, a blank dead page on an attorney website is a radioactive deterrent against potential clients. Just take the page down.
Never got the help it needed Dead Blog
For one reason or another, you can tell these blogs struggled. Either the blogger was a great writer, but unmotivated or they overthought blogging and couldn’t bring themselves to just write. Really, these are blogs that are missing that essential “something” that comes from a person dedicate to blogging for others. You can read the last several posts, while they are decent (maybe even good), the blog itself sank waiting for someone honest to come along and throw them a life-raft of criticism or help. It might be better to just let these ones go and remove them. You might find it more refreshing to start over if you choose you want to start blogging again.
This is oddly more common than one would imagine of the dead blogs out there. Blog posts are being routinely published, all decent-to-good, and consistent, but the blog just…sorta…ends. In the past, I’ve made efforts to reach out to these bloggers and see if they would ever reconsider blogging again. Some wanted to just sit on their laurels which is fine. Others found that life was just too busy and they had to cut something out of their day. One person was incapable of continuing due to health and I wish them well. However, while life can throw you a million curve-balls, I’ve never found blogging too difficult to just attempt something, anything.
Euthanized Dead Blogs
The last type I’ll write about are the blogs that deserved to die. I’ve found more ghost written or self-promo heavy dead blogs than any other type. You don’t have to be rocket scientist to know that these blogs were going to fail. Some salesman convinced the attorney that their ROI would be acceptable after the site generates more traffic with a high conversion rate. If you didn’t understand that last sentence, that’s okay, most people don’t and that’s the trap. These blogs are the absolute easiest to understand what had happened: the attorney got wise and saw that their business hadn’t increased. The best thing to do is cut your loses and remove the content. In the long run, you’ll lose good clients that read your terrible post and thought to go somewhere else.
It is your right to end your blog for whatever reason you see fit, but give some consideration before you pull the plug. Heck, I’ll take time to help a struggling blogger and I know many LexBloggers who would be more than willing to jump in. For the others that have blank pages or lack-luster dead blogs, consider taking them down before you hurt your reputation any further. Finally, for those that has had a rough go of life and cut blogging out, I wish you the best and hope things get better. As always, hope someone found this useful. Happy Blogging!